Canadian Investors Taking a More Conservative Approach to their Investments, according to Scotiabank Study



    - Canadians(*) show strong desire to seek second opinion on investments

    TORONTO, Jan. 6 /CNW/ - One-in-four Canadians say economic uncertainty
and market volatility has led them to take a more conservative approach to
their savings and investments, according to a recent Scotiabank study gauging
Canadians' attitudes toward investing and retirement in the current economic
environment. This is particularly true among investors who are heading into
retirement (aged 50+), more than one-third of whom have pushed back their
retirement age.
    "Considering that equity markets worldwide are down significantly, it
comes as no surprise that investors are paying close attention to their risk
tolerance and how their portfolios are positioned to meet their long term
goals," said Gareth Watson, Director and Senior Equity Advisor, ScotiaMcLeod.
"In down markets, it's natural for investors to become more conservative when
surrounded by substantial volatility and uncertainty."
    According to the study, 39 per cent of Canadians say they are paying more
attention to their investments as a result of the economy. Fifty-four per cent
of those surveyed indicated they are more likely now to seek a second opinion
on their investments, with 30 per cent having already done so at a financial
institution they do not normally deal with. In fact, 17 per cent say they took
the recommendations of the advisor who provided the second opinion.
    "Financial planning is a high priority for many Canadians," says Mr.
Watson. "Just like any important decision, it's wise to seek advice from more
than one source to ensure that decisions are well informed and provide
comfort."
    Forty per cent of Canadians say financial advisors at banks and credit
unions will be in highest demand this year to help them navigate their
investment options.
    The Scotiabank Investment Study was conducted for Scotiabank by
Harris/Decima, among members of Harris/Decima's online panel. (*) To qualify for
the survey, respondents were required to be household investment decision
makers and have household savings/investments. A total of 1,006 online surveys
were conducted from among a random sample of Harris/Decima panel members, of
which 701 qualified as household investment decision makers with household
savings/investments. The study was conducted November 11th, 2008 to November
17th, 2008. Subsequent to completion of the study, the data was weighted for
region, age, and gender.

    Scotiabank is one of North America's premier financial institutions and
Canada's most international bank. With more than 69,000 employees, Scotiabank
Group and its affiliates serve approximately 12.5 million customers in some 50
countries around the world. Scotiabank offers a diverse range of products and
services including personal, commercial, corporate and investment banking.
With $508 billion in assets (as at October 31, 2008), Scotiabank trades on the
Toronto (BNS) and New York Exchanges (BNS). For more information please visit
www.scotiabank.com.




For further information:

For further information: Patty Stathokostas, Scotiabank Public Affairs,
(416) 866-3625, patty_stathokostas@scotiacapital.com; In the Prairies, Deborah
Spence, Scotiabank Public Affairs, (403) 254-6830,
deborah.spence@scotiabank.com; In B.C., Michelle Cobb, Scotiabank Public
Affairs, (778) 668-2995, Michelle.Cobb@scotiabank.com


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